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Hi Larry,

 

Ah yes, NaSty 10s. In the '80s, someone had a hit record that was mixed on those. The engineer who used them to do the mixes, covered the tweeters with squares of toilet paper ("the Charmin mod") and others emulated this.

 

Odd for what are, to my ears, quite constipated sounding little shoeboxes. I always asked, "if they need toilet paper, just what is it that is coming out of those tweeters?"

 

Place them on the meter bridge of the console, as was common, and on top of their inherent sound, you get a dip at the engineer's ears, right in the middle of the midrange. (This goes back to my thing about engineer's not being taught - and not thinking on their own- to ask "the questions".)

 

"...I think accurate recording and pop music are two different things. Maybe one of the reasons you got away from it and do your own thing..

 

Popular music recording it seems like an art form using a mountain of equipment and effects with overdubs using 120 tracks and end up with something original that makes you feel good and sells. I'm not sure accuracy or timbre or any other word to describe it is important...

 

Definitely one of the reasons. I don't think pop necessarily has to be sonically massacred. (The next Soundkeeper release, currently just entering the final mastering phase, will be -I believe- the world's first purist rock recording. No mix. No overdubs. Just a real band, actually playing the song with everyone in the room at the same time. And no dynamic restriction whatsoever.)

 

I've always wanted a rock recording that gives me some of the feeling of being in the presence of the band (that "in your chest" feeling), as opposed to the feeling of listening to a very large table radio.

 

Best regards,

Barry

www.soundkeeperrecordings.com

www.barrydiamentaudio.com

 

 

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played a demo as part of his TAD-sponsored presentation for Bravura Records. It was a heavy metal track, recorded, as you say, at 24/192 with no real limiting, no overdubs, etc. It was quite revelatory!

 

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Barry, my 27000 digital would be in relation to the +32767/-32768 maxima for Redbook. Half of that is -6dBFS, so the 27000 would be around -2dBFS.

 

Mark, such an album which doesn't use the full dynamic range indeed can still be compressed, but at least it seems to tell that nobody wanted to use the combination of full dynamic range and the loudest possible. But indeed, it still can be compressed. Also, that -2dB doesn't give much opportunity to anticipate on all without attenuation later (to me this merely seems to need something like 12dB). So I don't know what the strategy was/is for such albums. But they almost always sound much better ...

 

About the -8 for video ... well, I kind of like that because it give me the opportunity to downmix to stereo (I don't have a surround system) and pump up the LFE somewhat (I do have satellited subs), although it still isn't enough for that. Thus I'd have to attenuate first anyway (not good unless the software is smart).

 

Actually for me compression on videos is a kind of comfortable; I always fight with the volume setting, knowing that in 90% of cases the first few minutes of a movie contain the loudest part (teasing ?), the family wanting the volume down, me always saying that it will be allright lateron. This is with less compression. With more it won't be allright at all, and it's always a guess how things will turn out. Anyway, the "equalisation" coming from it, makes watching a movie more comfortable, knowing that I like my legs flappin' with a fair amount of sub low.

I know, a dog's argumentation ...

 

Still curious what the obscure reasons were. :-)

Peter

 

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Is doing it the other way around. Record in 24 bits using that anticipated 12dB of headroom I talked about - or even more, and later gain that to some normalized level. If "you" don't do the latter, I do that myself during playback, but this is not for everybody of course.

 

Dumb idea ?

 

Regards,

Peter

 

 

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Hi Peter,

 

"...Is doing it the other way around. Record in 24 bits using that anticipated 12dB of headroom I talked about - or even more, and later gain that to some normalized level. If "you" don't do the latter, I do that myself during playback, but this is not for everybody of course..."

 

This isn't far off from what I do with my recordings. I set levels so the loudest peak does not exceed -6 dBFS. (To me, this is the "sweet spot" as every monolithic A-D converter I'm aware of exhibits lower distortion at this level than at higher levels.) Since I prefer -12 to -2 for the inital A-D conversion, sometimes a track might peak lower than -6. Final levels are adjusting digitally, during the mastering session.

 

Best regards,

Barry

www.soundkeeperrecordings.com

www.barrydiamentaudio.com

 

 

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You are one of the reasons I spend more and more time on this forum. In fact it's fast becoming my favourite forum, along with Naim Audio.

 

I just really want to commend you on your down to earth, insightful, and well written comments and information. It really makes my day.

 

Thanks to all the posters here, and above all to Chris, for such a great forum.

 

Sincerely,

 

Dave

 

MacBook->Audirvana Plus->Naim DAC-V1>Naim Nait XS->Naim Intros/nSATs

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Ry Cooder is great all around and definitely hi-res. I just purchased the Hotel California with the 15% discount. Here is the Audacity spectrum. It's not brick walled...

 

Ry Cooder (Buena Vista SC) : completely agreed.

 

Hotel California : I'm not sure what you're saying (my english !). If I had to say it, this is upsampled with (too) slow rolled off filtering.

 

As a bonus, and since I don't think it is in here yet, here's the 192 version (Elektra 2001) :

 

 

 

 

 

See any similarities on the clipping department ?

 

But who knows ... maybe the 192 was created from the 96. Haha.

 

 

 

 

Last picture :

 

 

 

The first is the original as far as I can tell. No clipping (but all against the limit).

The second one is the DCC Gold. See the fewer compression ? Now it allows a few clips though. This last one should be the best sounding one ...

 

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Sorry for nagging around, but I just see that it is most likely that no 24/96 2ch from Hotel California exists ...

A 5.1 surround version - yes.

 

So the 24/96 available for download ... what is it ? (I don't have this one)

A downmix from 5.1 or a downsample from 192 ?

I can't decide because the 192 already doesn't look right.

 

I will stop for now.

Peter

 

 

 

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Hi Dave,

 

Thank you for taking the time to write your very kind and much appreciated post.

 

I'm glad to be here and share listening experiences and music discoveries with friends, old and new.

 

And thanks to Chris for hosting such a great site.

 

Best regards,

Barry

www.soundkeeperrecordings.com

www.barrydiamentaudio.com

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I have only my ears to make a comparison and I think they have served me well over the years but it seems to me that the more recent WB high resolution releases on HD Tracks that to my knowledge were all previously released on DVD-Audio (at least the ones I purchased) sound quite significantly better than the Universal and other high resolution releases (excluding classical) that were previously released in the SACD format.

 

Is there something about material sourced/transferred or whatever from DVD-Audio 'masters' that would technically make them better than SACD sourced materials? Does anyone else here this and agree?

 

"If you fly a flag of hate you are no kin to me"

Ry Cooder

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I am not the most knowledgeable in this field, but at least SACD *can* technically be very bad when played back with a wrong player. Up to something like 8 bits resolution only.

 

Next, I think SACD can't be better than 88.2KHz no matter what player (actually D/A chip) is used, so that might matter too (although 99% of DVD-A is 96KHz, and only a few are 192).

 

Besides the above, most of the problems will be in the (down) conversions. Or at least the anomalies coming from there will make the profound differences IMHO.

 

Be careful with listening to me, because I was the guy who can't bear any DVD-A, just because they all fail (eh, 3 exceptions ? (don't know much about classical)).

 

I don't think there's even a chance for any hires "recording" to be good. I mean, if I need to play, say, 50 random redbook albums to find one of which I think it sounds great - how to find great sounding RECORDINGS within that 0.0001 whatever% of hires material ?

And then not to speak about taste.

 

2c

Peter

 

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Yes, and we all know how much 2c is worth these days ! (grin)

 

Blame the Recording and Mastering Engineers who value their jobs and do as instructed by the record companies, rather than the high res formats. The better recording engineers go Independent !

I look forward to hearing Soundkeeper Recordings new high res rock album when released.

"All live, to two mics, no compression, no "mix", etc. etc."

 

 

 

How a Digital Audio file sounds, or a Digital Video file looks, is governed to a large extent by the Power Supply area. All that Identical Checksums gives is the possibility of REGENERATING the file to close to that of the original file.

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Yes Alex, this sure should have been added to my post.

 

I did explicitly not because I actually have no clue about what common record labels are doing at this moment. But merely, how come I don't know or hear anything about it.

 

So, for example, if some commonly known label comes up with a new recording of usually on-stage drunk women, where is the hires version of that ? nowhere ?

To me it seems that only redbook is provided.

 

In the mean time all kind of supershit comes along from old stuff, might that ever have been on DVD-A or SACD, or might that have been in dark cabinets forever.

Isn't this strange ?

 

Is it maybe about the large labels not having a provision for distribution ??

Is it maybe about no stores actually carrying any hires, hence don't want to reserve the space for it ?

 

Maybe I'm not informed enough, but overhere in Holland I only know about some specialized shops far away from me. So, physical shops I mean. There you can buy them (or order them if not available). But I would be talking about SACD, or DVD-A when still available. The larger stores don't carry hires at all, like as far as I know you wouldn't be able to buy anything at Best Buy's in the US.

 

So, where actually is the problem ?

Should be about no consumers or something ...

Or maybe even a complete given up market ??

 

Peter

 

PS: Are there as many new recordings (albums) as earlier anyway ?

 

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Hi mwheelerk,

 

I'm not sure exactly what overall differences you are hearing but with all the other variables aside, I would not be surprised that a PCM source like a DVD-A master provides better sound than one sourced from an SACD master.

 

I think this is one of the many, many things where, in my experience, some folks hear it and some don't (the way I don't hear a difference between .aif and .wav of the same file) but I find the treble of SACD somewhat stressful and discomforting. It is as though the dynamic range is increasingly compressed with increasing frequency. On the other hand, I know folks that love SACD.

(I'm talking about the format itself hear, not the format as heard via one or two playback devices.)

 

Best regards,

Barry

www.soundkeeperrecordings.com

www.barrydiamentaudio.com

 

 

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PCM-PCM (since classic rock was clearly never recorded in DSD) versus

PCM-DSD-PCM (classic rock albums that were sent to SACD then ripped for HDTracks). That additional journey through 1 bit land could likely have huge sonic consequences. Simplistic, I know, but that's my vote. And I've nothing against DSD (if only we computer audiophiles could hear native DSD-analog instead of the seemingly prerequisite PCM stage).

 

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Barry, I am always hard pressed to come up with the proper descriptions of what I hear but more open, detailed, more air are the best I have. Certainly not a comparison between good and bad but simply something better to my ears.

 

ted_b I can imagine your assessment as making some sense. There is just something more to these WB HD Tracks releases than the Universal releases. Obviously there are differences in the masterings of each but these are such well known titles that that aspect, I think, is not at play in what I am hearing.

 

Maybe it is just me as no one else yet has indicated hearing a difference.

 

"If you fly a flag of hate you are no kin to me"

Ry Cooder

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Eh... what might this be? :)

 

And to avoid any concern about promotion - eh - how are you going to record a rock concert and get the same kind of sound you got on Lift? Or is it just a completely different kind of thing? :)

 

-Paul

 

Anyone who considers protocol unimportant has never dealt with a cat DAC.

Robert A. Heinlein

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Hi mwheelerk,

 

Aside from the format differences (to me) which I mentioned earlier, the labels themselves, in my experience, has something of a "sound". I've always felt Warner's pop recordings were a bit better than the average (taking into account of course, the wide variations between individual recordings).

 

I think the only truly fair (and effective) way to know what is going on would be to have the same mastering of the same album go through both paths and compare the results. Otherwise, there are simply too many variables to be sure. (That said, my ears find certain variables to be more prominent than others.)

 

Best regards,

Barry

www.soundkeeperrecordings.com

www.barrydiamentaudio.com

 

 

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Hi Paul,

 

"...Eh... what might this be? :)"

 

"And to avoid any concern about promotion - eh - how are you going to record a rock concert and get the same kind of sound you got on Lift? Or is it just a completely different kind of thing? :)..."

 

 

When I say I record "live", I mean I'm recording a real performance, with all the players on stage and all the parts being played simultaneously. This, as opposed to a recording with overdubs, which I would not consider "live".

 

It is also live in the context of being recorded with a stereo mic array, a single mic feeding each playback channel, so there is no subsequent mix. The "mix" is done before I press the red button, where instead of moving faders, I move players (and amps), to achieve the balance, imaging and soundstage I seek.

 

There is no audience present; long ago, I learned modern audiences are not quiet enough for this type of recording. By way of example of why I need to be concerned, during the "Lift" sessions, during the fade out of the last chord on one song, the mics very clearly picked up a fly in the back of the church. (!) And he was in a different key! This forced two re-takes -because the fly also joined in on the second one. (You could call it a concert for one and I'm the lucky "audience". ;-})

 

All that said, the sound is different from "Lift" because it is a different band, with different combinations of instruments (from full electric to guitar/piano and guitar/cello duets to a piano/cello/French horn trio to solo piano), recorded in a different room (a small auditorium). Not to mention the more recent recordings being done at 192k with the ULN-8, which did not exist when "Lift" was recorded.

 

Best regards,

Barry

www.soundkeeperrecordings.com

www.barrydiamentaudio.com

 

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Barrry, you should have left the fly in! The track would have become an audiophile classic -- a test of system resolution -- like the air conditioner in the Cowboy Junkies album, or the rain on the roof in that John Atkinson Gluck flute recording. In fact, I think you should include one extraneous noise in all your recordings. Audiophiles will buy the recordings to see if their systems will play back the noise realistically; eventually they might even start liking the music!

 

Take care -- Mark B

 

Mac Mini, Pure Music, iTunes, Lynx Hilo, Merrill Taranis amp, Seta Piccola phono preamp, Phil Jones Platinum Reference One speakers, Sennheiser HD 600 headphones.

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I look forward to that. Living in Austin, we have the opportunity to hear a lot of live music, but rarely in a venue where it sounds half as good as it could sound.

 

Your Lift fly has relatives here, big noisy barflys I am afraid. :)

 

-Paul

 

 

Anyone who considers protocol unimportant has never dealt with a cat DAC.

Robert A. Heinlein

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Hi Mark,

 

"...Barrry, you should have left the fly in! The track would have become an audiophile classic -- a test of system resolution -- like the air conditioner in the Cowboy Junkies album, or the rain on the roof in that John Atkinson Gluck flute recording. In fact, I think you should include one extraneous noise in all your recordings. Audiophiles will buy the recordings to see if their systems will play back the noise realistically; eventually they might even start liking the music!..."

 

Yikes! I hope it is the music (and sound) that would move folks to purchase the recordings and not the artifacts. ;-}

I have played the "fly version" at a few talks I've given for some audiophile societies. (Might do it again when I speak with the New Jersey Audio Society this Sunday.)

 

If the fly was in the correct key, I might have considered leaving him. On the project I'm currently mastering (our next release), there were birds outside the auditorium on a few of the days. While they won't be heard over the electric guitars in the rockers, they might be heard during some of the quieter moments, particularly in one of the voice/solo piano tunes (right after the final lyrics in the song: "Sing to me again" ;-}).

I'll have to see if the birds did a better job than the fly did. ;-}

 

Best regards,

Barry

www.soundkeeperrecordings.com

www.barrydiamentaudio.com

 

 

 

 

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Hi Paul,

 

"...I look forward to that. Living in Austin, we have the opportunity to hear a lot of live music, but rarely in a venue where it sounds half as good as it could sound..."

 

At concerts and other performances, I find myself always wishing for a "sound man" that has an idea of what he's doing (and a "sound system" that isn't designed primarily for speech intelligibility from 1/4 mile).

 

Most of the time, I just wish they'd turn the PA off.

Needless to say, there was no PA for the project I'm currently working on finishing up. (Only the electric guitars and electric bass had amplification, which I deem part of those instruments. Hard to get any real "bite" out of a Stratocaster that isn't plugged in. ;-})

 

Best regards,

Barry

www.soundkeeperrecordings.com

www.barrydiamentaudio.com

 

 

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Barrry, you should have left the fly in! The track would have become an audiophile classic -- a test of system resolution -- like the air conditioner in the Cowboy Junkies album, or the rain on the roof in that John Atkinson Gluck flute recording.

 

High Hopes from The Division Bell (Pink Floyd) already contains a fly at the beginning.

 

It ever so long has been a test recording for me to detect how long the fly was audible. Can differ 15 seconds easily.

 

:-)

 

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